Chairs in Ghana’s Parliament used by legislators have broken down less than two years after the state procured the furniture from China at a cost of GHS21 million for use by legislators.
It will be recalled that the house underwent a massive facelift in 2014, with most of the new fittings and additions to the renovations imported from China.
This prompted a backlash from a section of the populace after local furniture companies were overlooked in favour of their Chinese counterparts.
Others also raised red flags about the durability of the chairs. The joy of the legislators transacting business from a new and comfortable chamber was short-lived as only a few months later, some of the chair parts started coming off.
During the recent break by parliament, all the furniture was replaced and legislators had new chairs when the house resumed sitting on Tuesday May 17, 2016.
Speaking to XYZ News’ parliamentary correspondent Edzorna Mensah, Deputy Majority Whip Ahmed Ibrahim said the replacement of the chairs was done at no cost to the state due to a warranty clause in the contract with the Chinese company.
“[This is] because of some defects in the chairs that were procured for parliamentary work and a clause that was in the contract within two years in which if anything goes bad, then it will replace the chairs. This is at the contractor’s own interest and all that you see there, the Ghanaian taxpayer is not paying even a pesewa. He replaced all the 275 chairs free off charge without any new procurement,” he noted
“Ghanaians should praise parliament for doing a good job. Which local contractor would have given a two-year warranty? Parliament did enough due diligence. We went in for the best – Ghanaians are the winners and the contractor is the loser.
He maintained that giving the contract to a local company “would have led to more middlemen”.
“It was open and those with the best and lowest prices with high quality won. It was not single-sourced to anybody, they [local companies] had the opportunity to come and bid. All the procurement processes were followed.”